Where “Problems” are countered by the “Best Solutions”
Physician, heal thyself is good advice if you run a small business. You already know how to fix the problems in your business, and you know how to grow from those problems.
Follow these five steps to think like a consultant, and fix your business.
1. List your problems.
Here’s a technique called The Power of Negative Thinking, from Barbara Sher’s Wishcraft. Get a friend and give him a pad and pen. Launch into a standup comedy routine. That’s right. Stand up. Talk loudly. Complain and moan. The theme is: Here’s what’s wrong with my business. Have your friend write down every complaint.
Once you’ve bemoaned your business’s biggest issues, you have a list of the problems in your business, and you’ll feel better, too.
2. Pick one.
So now you have a list of problems. But you can only fix one at a time. So pick one.
How? Well, try this. Which problem:
- Is killing your business?
- Is driving you nuts?
- Looks like an easy place to start?
- Can you fix yourself, with little or no help?
- Will bring in, or save, the most money?
Answer any of those questions. Pick one; then get moving.
3. Fix the right problem.
If a doctor gave you heart medicine for a stomach problem, you’d be mad. But in business, people fix the wrong problem all the time.
Shortness of breath — a lung problem — can be caused by heart trouble. Skin rashes can be caused by allergies. The key to fixing the right problem is to realize that the symptom is in one place, and the cause is in another. This is true in our bodies and our businesses.
If sales are bad, don’t push your sales people harder. Fix the mistake in marketing. The key to being your own consultant is to think like a physician, an engineer and a troubleshooter: If this is the symptom, then where’s the problem? A business works like a set of gears, and all businesses operate more or less the same way. In every business, you’ll have to address these issues:
- Know your target market: Who would benefit from your product or service?
2. Reach your customers: Use advertising, promotion or networking to meet your customers where they already are. Show them their pain. Show them your product or service is the solution.
3. Bring your customer to your store or website.
4. Persuade your customers to buy your product.
5. Deliver the goods.
6. Collect testimonials and referrals.
Follow this cycle over and over.
4. Diagnose before solving.
So you’re ready to fix the right problem. But are you sure you know the solution?
There’s a great way to get to the bottom of a problem. It’s called the “Five Whys?” Take a problem. Ask “Why is this happening?” five times.
For example, projects often run late:
Why did the project run late?
We didn’t know all that we would need to do. We ended up having to do a lot more work at the last minute, and we missed the deadline.
Why didn’t you know what you needed to do?
We didn’t sit down and write up a plan. We just got to work.
Why didn’t you write up a plan?
We didn’t think it was worth the time.
Why didn’t you think it was worth the time?
We were running late after delays on other projects, we got started late and just thought we had to get to work.
Why were you running late on other projects?
Because we didn’t sit down and write up a plan, and missed our deadline.
Now we have the answer. Project after project, each one with no plan, each one ran late. The solution: Take time to plan each project, and write down the plan. For a small project, that may take an hour. But that one hour of planning will save 10 hours of work..
The best idea here is to create a quick to-do list. Make a plan. Assign every job. A few hours of planning equals $8,000 per year of increased profit, forever. Is this beginning to sink in?
The rule behind this is called the “1:10:100 rule”.
Every hour of good planning saves 10 hours of work, or 100 hours of mess that you have to clean up afterward.
So name the problem and put it in front of you. Ask “Why?” five times. Come up with a solution that will permanently prevent the problem. You’re ready to go — almost.
5. Get the expertise you need.
Before we commit to a solution, we need an expert to check our work.
You can find a cheap expert to cut down on costs, but who wants to go to the lowest bidder for heart surgery? If this is your business, be willing to pay for the expertise that will solve the problem correctly, and solve it forever. Pay once for the best, instead of paying for a fix that breaks again and again.
So how do you hire an expensive expert cheaply?
It’s simple. Do most of the work yourself. Most of us experts spend most of our time asking you what your problem is until you give us a clear answer. Then we waste more time persuading you to do what will work.
Skip that part. Do the work of defining the problem and understanding possible solutions yourself. Then hire the expert for a second opinion. That takes very little time and costs very little money. But it ensures you’re on the right track.
We at “Quatrons” are there to play a part of your journey to stand by your side as you move from the first rung to the zenith of the ladder of success and prosperity. We the team Quatrons are here to help you realize the best solutions/enhancements to your problems or as we say prefer to say here “innovations”.
Find us for contact at : https://quatrons.tech/
For any further details DM me on LinkedIn at : https://www.linkedin.com/in/shubham-pradhan-a09ab2185/